STATEWIDE – Friday’s shooting of a teen-aged armed robbery suspect in Limerick is the eighth officer-involved shooting for 2019, but only the third fatality.
“All of those cases are still under investigation by the Office of the Attorney General, which is standard procedure for any officer-involved use of deadly force,” Marc Malon, spokesman for the state’s Attorney General, said Monday.
Christopher Camacho, 16, of Limerick, was shot and killed Friday evening at the Dollar General store in his hometown by York County Deputy Sheriff Robert Carr.
On May 21, Steven Case, 29, of Auburn reportedly had a hostage and held police at bay for hours before he was mortally shot by Maine State Police tactical team member Andrew Hardy.
Case was convicted on a weapons charge and was supposed to begin serving a jail sentence within days of the shooting.
Ten days later, in nearby Gorham, Kyle Needham, 32, was shot and killed by Gorham police Officer Dean Hannon in the parking lot of the local Burger King.
Authorities say Needham was in a truck and had rammed at least one police vehicle and it appeared he was attempting to run over a person when he was shot.
Malon said the August 5 death of Keven Harvey was ruled a suicide, but a Lewiston police officer exchanged gunfire with him before his death, so that case is also under review.
“Compared to previous years there were 5 in 2018 and 12 in 2017,” Malon said. “So the number of cases varies year to year without much to really predict how many cases we’ll end up dealing within a given year.”
The other police-involved shootings this year resulted in injuries to police or suspects, or both.
On April 26, Chief Deputy Todd Lyford of the Piscataquis County Sheriff’s Office attempted to pull over Douglas Hazen, 40, of Medford, who was wanted on arrest warrants.
Hazen took off and led police on a low-speed chase that ended at his residence where an armed confrontation occurred between him, Lyford and Damien Pickel from Milo Police Department.
On Nov. 24, Augusta police Officer Sabastian Guptill was trying to locate Robert Farrington, 27, when they got into an armed confrontation.
Farrington was wanted for a previous domestic assault and cruelty to animals, authorities said.
Just three days later, in Thorndike, another armed confrontation occurred when Erik Fitzpatrick, 33, who was wanted for questioning in an earlier domestic incident, was shot by Trooper Thomas Bureau.
And earlier this month, a Waterville police officer was shot twice in the arms when attempting to stop a shoplifter who, unbeknownst to him, was armed with an assault-style rifle.
Waterville police Officer Timothy Hinton, who was treated at a local hospital and released that day, continued to pursue suspect Richard Murray-Burns until other law enforcement joined the chase.
Murray-Burns was able to disable some of the responding vehicles with his high-powered weapon.
Police eventually shot Murray-Burns near the intersection of routes 2 and 23, ending the chase in Canaan. He remains at Nothern Light Eastern Maine Medical Center in Bangor. He has yet to be charged.